One of the most enduring memories of growing up in a small village was the regular visit of the library bookmobile. The wonder of being able to go in and check out books at no cost! Books that took me to other worlds, other peoples, other times ... especially for me - the pioneering, the colonial times.
Now, I don't have to wait for visiting the library. I have one in my own town. One that offers books, magazines, CDs, videos, free use of computers, storytime for children, introducing them to the enchantment of reading and active adult book club proving that the love of reading extends into a lifetime of enjoyment.
However, because of budget constraints the open times of our library and others have been reduced. This is due to a 35 per reduction in funds over the past few years. The threat looms that unless there is an increase of funds, certain library branches may be closed. That would be an immense loss to the towns affected by such closures. That is why I am encouraging Belmont County voters to vote "Yes" on the upcoming Belmont County District Library Levy.
This will be the first time in 83 year history of the library system that the county-wide assistance has been sought. If the 1-mill operating levy passes, it will be used to restore hours and services at the main library in Martins Ferry and all branches located in Bethesda, Bridgeport, Flushing, Powhatan Point and Shadyside. In addition, it will increase the ability to purchase books and other materials by 75 percent.
I urge all voters who will be eligible to vote on this levy, to vote "Yes" so that our libraries can remain a vital resource in the coming years.
Member of the Bethesda Adult Book Club